The late pastor and Bible scholar Donald Barnhouse perhaps said it best: "Love that goes upward is worship; love that goes outward is affection; love that stoops is grace."
Insight for Today
Written by Chuck Swindoll, these encouraging devotional thoughts are published seven days per week.
Freedom gives people a "Yes" face. I am confident Jesus had a "Yes" face. I have never seen Him, but I've determined from what I've read about Him that this was true.
Grace received but unexpressed is dead grace. To spend one's time debating how grace is received or how much commitment is necessary for salvation, without getting into what it means to live by grace and enjoy the magnificent freedom it provides, quickly leads to a counterproductive argument.
Fireplaces don't warm hearts. Neither does fine furniture nor a four-car garage nor a full stomach nor a job with a six-figure salary. No, a cold heart can be warmed only by the fire of the living God.
God's remnant of leaders is often a ragged lot...frequently made up of fresh-thinking, non-conforming, even weird-looking characters who desperately love the Lord Jesus Christ and are remarkably available to Him and His will.
Believe me, if Martin Luther lived today, he'd be heartsick. That rugged warrior of the faith had two basic objectives when he fired the reformation cannon into the 16th-century wall of spiritual ignorance.
Fear. Ever met this beast? Sure you have. It creeps into your cockpit by a dozen different doors. Fear of failure. Fear of heights. Fear of crowds. Fear of disease. Fear of rejection. Fear of unemployment.
Stop and reflect. Are you just growing old...or are you also growing up? As you "number your days" do you count just years—the grinding measurement of minutes—or can you find marks of wisdom...character traits that were not there when you were younger?
Please don't forget—God has decided to let you live this long. Your old age is not a mistake...nor an oversight...nor an afterthought. Isn't it about time you cooled your tongue and softened your smile with a refreshing drink from the water of God's oasis? You've been thirsty a long, long time.
So it is with resentment. Allowed to fester through neglect, the toxic fumes of hatred foam to a boil within the steam room of the soul. Pressure mounts to a maddening magnitude. By then it's only a matter of time.